The Austell Police Department was recently gifted a new canine to replace a K9 officer wounded in action earlier this year.
The Georgia K9 Foundation, a non-profit volunteer group in Statesboro, donated the police dog to the department, according to a news release Monday.
K9 officer Bane comes to Austell from the Netherlands, where he was purchased for about $12,000 on Aug. 8. The 3-year-old Dutch shepherd arrived in Austell on Aug. 20 and will begin canine training Wednesday.
“Typically, we as an organization do not purchase K9s for departments,” the foundation’s president Kyle Briley said. “However, with the enormous amount of support from not only Georgia, but also from across the country for K9 Jerry Lee, we knew without a doubt this was the right thing to do.”
Jerry Lee, a longtime Austell canine, was wounded in the line of duty while chasing a fugitive April 18. Dequan Cortez Glenn, 24, was trying to escape a police checkpoint near I-20 in Douglasville when he shot the German shepherd in the left elbow. Glenn later killed himself.
The wound forced veterinarians at the Blue Pearl Animal Hospital in Sandy Springs to amputate Jerry Lee’s leg in May, ending his law enforcement career.
Donations poured in through the Georgia K9 Foundation, which paid more than $6,000 in Jerry Lee’s medical expenses, according to the press release.
When budget constraints kept the Austell Police Department from filling Jerry Lee’s spot on the K9 force, the foundation stepped in to find a replacement.
Bane will be partnered with patrol officer Edward Reeves, the cop who spent nearly a year handling Jerry Lee.
The K9 Foundation will pay $8,000 for his training expenses and will also outfit him with a K9 Streetfighter bulletproof vest that can help regulate his body temperature. In addition, the group will pay to install an Ace K9 Heat Alarm in his police cruiser that sends out alerts and rolls down the back windows if the temperature gets too hot in the vehicle.
In all, the Georgia K9 Foundation provided the Austell Police Department with more than $28,000 in donations for the medical costs, equipment, training and the purchase of Bane.